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Old 11-11-2003, 08:06 AM   #1
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Remembering WWI

Today is Rememberance/Veterans Day.

So, at 11am, if you can, please take a few minutes and remember all those who fought--not only in WWI, but WWII and all other armed conflicts.

Thus, I leave you with a poem (gasp! a poem! But this isn't Dream Out Loud!) written by a Canadian physician as he looked out over the thousands of crosses in Flanders, Belgium, and the millions of poppies that grew wild over the gravesite.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.


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Old 11-11-2003, 08:11 AM   #2
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Old 11-11-2003, 08:26 AM   #3
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I would like to honor my parents, both of whom are veterans.

I salute you, Mom and Dad!
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Old 11-11-2003, 10:18 AM   #4
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I'd like to salute the members of my family who were involved in various conflicts, too. Thanks for all you did.

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Old 11-11-2003, 10:38 AM   #5
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That was lovely. Thanks.

I shouldn't get into a historical lecture here, but I think the saddest thing about WW1 is that it didn't solve anything. The way it was settled only led to more problems which later led to WW2 and the conflicts in the former Yugoslavian countries that have happened in our time.

Millions of people, not only military but civilians, died in that terrible tragedy. Because of how WW1 ended, such problems were caused in Germany that would lead to the even more deadly WW2. Who had the bright idea of lumping the countries of Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Slovenia and others, some of them bitter enemies for centuries, into one country? (Yugoslavia) That was bad for many people. After the communist regime, which had harshly and cruelly supressed internal problems for years, fell in 1989, the old hatreds flared openly gain. There have been many brutal fights and deaths in that region since then.

Then there was the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia which drove the Tsar/Czar from power. He and most of his family were brutally executed. Lenin and the other Revolutionaries and terrorists who had tried for years to oust the government used the unpopularity of WW1 in Russia as one of their rallying points to overthrow the Romanovs, and then the Provisional Government that tried to turn Russia into a constitutional democracy. Death and doom reigned in Russia for another 6 years after the end of WW1 in the Russian civil war. Millions of people were killed or executed, many of them civilians, even children. The communist Red Army's eventual victory led to even more problems inside Russia and throughout the world with the spread of Communism, and then the Cold War.

How could those who thought WW1 was 'the war to end all wars' ever see it would only start so many more? Are we now, nearly 100 years later, finally curing some of the wounds that caused WW1, or were caused by WW1 and its aftershock? Sigh. Even so, the rest of the world is a mess.

I salute all the veterans, both living and dead of all these conflicts, as well as the countless innocent victims of it all. You are not forgotten.
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Old 11-11-2003, 10:54 AM   #6
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You are exactly right, U2Kitten.

I am doing a paper on WWI as the "definitive moment of the 20th century."

The domino effect of war is exactly why we must remember those who were lost...
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Old 11-11-2003, 11:02 AM   #7
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all my grandparents (i had three, cuz my mom's mom remarried) were in the navy. i know at least my grandpa was in world war two, don't know about my pop pop or my dad's dad (don't have a name for him really as he died before i was born). one of my uncles was also in the navy but didn't fight in any of the wars.

i'm not sure if any of the others have injuries, i doubt it, but i do know my grandpa was shot in the leg while at war and still has some of the shrapnel in his leg, i think. i'm not too clear because it's not something he talks about a lot. he's not a super talkative guy, so i'm not sure if he was traumatized by anything he saw while at war or if he just doesn't feel like talking.

"Because a senator - a politician - a person - who can let hang in mid-air the prospect that she might just be sticking around in part, just in case the other guy gets shot - has no business being, and no capacity to be, the President of the United States." -- Keith Olbermann
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Old 11-11-2003, 02:32 PM   #8
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Thanks AvsGirl41. I'd LOVE to read your paper- I really would! I go to the library and check out stuff like that all the time to read just for fun. I'm a real history buff.

I also want to add that when I say I salute everyone who fought or died, I mean ALL countries, not just any one country or one side. Everyone who ever fought in any war were doing what they had to do and all their lives were worth something. So I salute everyone except anyone who purposely killed innocent civilians like the Red Army in Russia's Revolution and Civil War. They even shot the Tsar's kids.
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:01 PM   #9
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If it comes out readable, I will send you a copy. I have a stack of books I checked out at the beginning of the semester and I haven't even begun to open them yet--too many other papers.
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:07 PM   #10
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Thanks! Good luck with your paper!
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:10 PM   #11
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Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.
By Wilfred Owen (1893-1918)

"Wilfred Edward Salter Owen was born on March 18, 1893. He was on the Continent teaching until he visited a hospital for the wounded and then decided, in September, 1915, to return to England and enlist. "I came out in order to help these boys-- directly by leading them as well as an officer can; indirectly, by watching their sufferings that I may speak of them as well as a pleader can. I have done the first" (October, 1918).

Owen was injured in March 1917 and sent home; he was fit for duty in August, 1918, and returned to the front. November 4, just seven days before the Armistice, he was caught in a German machine gun attack and killed. He was twenty-five when he died.

The bells were ringing on November 11, 1918, in Shrewsbury to celebrate the Armistice when the doorbell rang at his parent's home, bringing them the telegram telling them their son was dead. "

Brings it all home, really.
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:15 PM   #12
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You're right U2Kitten. So much of the crud that's gone down in the past century can be traced to WWI and its so-called Versailles peace treaty. Some of the stuff that happened in the Middle East after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire is pretty regrettable stuff too. Pretty hot-button stuff, I hope this post doesn't get me fried.
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:19 PM   #13
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Right Verte! I was just telling a friend about this today and he told me I should have added the Ottoman Empire middle east stuff because it happened because of that too! Thanks!\

Don't worry about frying, I'm the one who made this a FYM thread If we don't fry together we will most surely fry seperately

ST's idea was good and her tribute is beautiful. I just couldn't help thinking about all the tragedies that have befallen the world since that 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:37 PM   #14
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at the going down of the sun, and in the morning....

My grandfather returned from Flanders
My father return from the Middle East.
My bro-in-law is currently serving.
I think of them often
and all the victims of war

I was in Queen Street Brisbane yesterday, 11am, 11th November. I didn't see one person who appeared to notice the time. I was disappointed.
Lest We Forget..
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Old 11-11-2003, 03:37 PM   #15
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I salute my late Father and my brother (living) for being Veterans in two different wars.

Into the heart of a child...
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